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New Escapist Column! On “The Mandalorian”, Continuity and Brand Synergy…

I published a new In the Frame piece at The Escapist this evening. There’s been a lot of Star Wars continuity dropped into the second season of The Mandalorian, with Boba Fett returning to the show following his apparent death in Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi, and the live action introduction of characters like Bo Katan and Ahsoka Tano from The Clone Wars.

This is interesting, in large part because the first season of The Mandalorian was comfortable aiming for a broader sort of Star Wars nostalgia, things that looked like existing elements of continuity, rather than things that were existing elements of Star Wars continuity. The second season is much more heavy of Star Wars cross-promotion, populated with references designed to push viewers towards supplementary material. This is a nice illustration of transmedia storytelling in the streaming age, where it isn’t enough to attract fans, services have to retain them.

Streaming services hold on to existing subscribers by adding value, and Disney appear to have figured out that continuity offers its own added value. In its second season, The Mandalorian increasingly feels like an advertisement for the other riches that the streaming service has to offer, and a promise that any subscriber who doesn’t cancel once the season is over will have a treasure trove of archival material to binge at their leisure.

You can read the piece here, or click the picture below.

Why the Pacific Belongs on Sky Movies

Sky caused a bit of a kerfuffle (it’s a word!) when they announced that The Pacific, the really rather excellent Second World War miniseries, would be airing on Sky Movies instead of Sky One – their television station. Queue the sounds of protest from various sources decrying the event as a television show which belongs on Sky’s primary television station – Sky One. However, Sky responded with the argument that Sky One simply isn’t equipped to broadcast a show like The Pacific, designed to air unedited and uninterrupted without overlays or advertisements. I’m going to take the unpopular path and argue that Sky were right: having watched the first two episodes, The Pacific should air on Sky Movies.

War over The Pacific?

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